30 Reviews in 30 Days: #8
A short promo disc:
Tub Ring – Promo Equation
Unappealing Music, 2000.
Chicagoland’s answer to a San Francisco area twisted, can’t be pigeonholed band:
1. Downloading Satan – Not more disconcerting than the sound of a fax machine on the other end of the line when you wanted a human or at least a voice mail. Tub Ring has always reminded me of Mr. Bungle, from the vocals sounding like Mike Patton, to the use of all kinds of polyphonic delights.
2. Bite the Wax Tadpole – A circus of insanity pulsing around the three rings around the tub, swirling down the drain into the dark unknown of these guys’ minds.
3. Numbers – Sounds like we have begun piano practice, with a bass accompaniment. Then we launch into something that sounds like it should have been sung by a girl pop vocal outfit from the lollipop era of rock-n-roll in the 1950’s. Then, we break back into Patton-style Mr. Bungle. And back to the 1950’s.
Lyrics? Oh I’m not even going to try to analyze them. The only one that sort of makes sense is “Numbers” which at times sounds like a cross between a math education children’s song and a science one. Tub Ring as a band picks up where Mr. Bungle left off. There are elements of jazz, carnival sounds, pop, metal, and polyphony everywhere. Unless you’ve heard it before, you have no idea where it is going or what your ears are going to be treated to or assaulted with next – like a fun house complete with scary clowns. They are a band you either like or don’t and even if you do like the Mr. Bungle type of music, you have to be in the right mood to wrap your head around it, like Phillip Glass, John Zorn, and John Moran’s early days (think The Manson Family: An Opera from 1990).
Listening Notes: Same Samsung laptop and earbuds as the last posts.